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ENISA puts out EU ICT Industrial Policy paper for consultation

The EU Agency for Cybersecurity, ENISA, launches its consultation paper ‘EU ICT Industrial Policy: Breaking the Cycle of Failure’, a paper that aims to explore issues such as digital sovereignty and the supply chain of cybersecurity products in Europe, as well as to present an overview of the relationship between the global ICT market and the cybersecurity market.

Published on July 10, 2019

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The paper serves as the basis for a consultation, where ENISA seeks the views of citizens, private and public stakeholders on how the European market may be understood and improved.

Interested parties are invited to submit their comments by 30 September 2019 by filling in the electronic survey.

The outcomes of this consultation will serve as input for a further publication and input into the discussions with the new European Commission and European Parliament.

The paper looks into the strengths and shortcomings of the ICT industrial policy in the EU from a cybersecurity perspective, with a view to how Europe can do better, and how the development of EU cybersecurity industry in the years to come can be rendered a success.

The paper identifies the current European ICT state-of-play, where in an average European office, ICT software and hardware are generally built and developed in Asia and the USA. Where Europe once led the world in the deployment of initially analogue and then mobile telecommunications technology such as GSM, Europe is now debating the appropriateness of the supply of 5G technology from non-European suppliers. Traditional EU mobile handset manufacturers are struggling to compete with major Asian and US suppliers.

Moreover, successful European businesses have been or are often acquired by larger companies from outside the EU. It is surprising to see how the European ICT industry is falling behind in the global competition race, while according to the European Commission, the EU Member States are among the most digitally advanced in the world.

Executive Director of ENISA Prof. Dr. Udo Helmbrecht: “The question is if and why are examples of European leadership in ICT beginning to fade. Is there insufficient coordination in relation to cybersecurity in the EU? Could resources be deployed more efficiently? These are some of the questions that are being presented for discussion. We look forward to receiving your input into this consultation.”

The public consultation was announced by the executive director, Udo Helmbrecht at the CODE conference 2019, where he moderated a panel titled "How to Achieve Digital Sovereignty of Europe?". The panel of high-level speakers included Klaus Vitt, State Secretary, Federal Ministry of Interior, Building and Community, Benedikt Zimmer, State Secretary, Federal Ministry of Defence, Roberto Viola, Director-General Communications Networks, Content and Technology, European Commission, Jorge Domecq, Executive Director, European Defence Agency and Evert Dudok, Executive Vice President Communications, Intelligence and Security, Airbus Defence and Space. The annual CODE conference 2019 hosted by the Research Institute for Cyber Defence and Smart Data at the Bundeswehr University Munich and focuses on Cyber/IT innovation dialogue.

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